Alan Whitehouse's Ramblings

Continuing to work until my heavy investment in lottery tickets finally pays off….

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Deep Thought

    Historically speaking, all true change in the world has come thanks to leaders emerging, them taking charge and giving the masses someone to rally around. Can an intentionally "leaderless" movement survive or will it just slowly fade away?

  • Subscribe

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 18 other followers

  • Me!

  • Advertisements
  • Disclaimer

    The views expressed in this blog, while intelligent and always right, are strictly my own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of anyone else with which I am in any way affiliated. And don't forget, I own the rights to all information on this blog (except for the stuff I stole from other people).
  • Current Rant


    You want change, then get involved. Vote, run for office, go to shareholder meetings and contact advertisers or investors. Sitting around banging drums, singing kumbaya, smoking weed and having a camp out under the stars is not going to get you the change you want.

  • Admin Stuff

Office 365 and Business Intelligence

Posted by Alan on August 5, 2011

So yesterday I spent the afternoon at Microsoft learning more about the new Office 365 offering.  All in all, I am very impressed by what you get with Office 365 for the cost.  When you looking at the pricing the Exchange, Lync, SharePoint and Office Professional offerings the decision to go that route should be a no-brainer for most organizations — especially those who are running older software releases or have hardware refreshes in their near future.  So what is my problem with the Office 365?  It all comes down to the SharePoint component, or more specifically, what is missing from the SharePoint 365 offering.

As far as SharePoint is concerned, in the current Office 365 release there is no support for the following items — PerformancePoint Services, Business Connectivity Services, FAST search or fully-trusted code.  Without PerformancePoint Services and BCS the ability to provide BI in the Microsoft public cloud is extremely limited.  It all comes down to the fact that none of these components is designed to be multi-tenant and although Microsoft is working on solutions the word I keep hearing is that we won’t see any changes until the wave 15 release of Office or beyond.   It is the “or beyond” that scares me and makes me worry how much of a priority any of these items truly have, if at all.  And when Denali is release, I really doubt we will see any sort of support for SSRS or Project Crescent within SharePoint 365 for quite a while.

Now it is true that SharePoint 365 does support Excel Services, Access Services, Visio Services and PowerPivot.  However, as I have been informed, all your data has to reside within the SharePoint environment as well.  This means any type of dashboard or scorecard or analysis you can do using these tools will be difficult as you will have to constantly be uploading Excel spreadsheets or Access databases to SharePoint in order to have updated data.  Although I suppose you could possible use the SharePoint 365 web services and create some code that resides in your on-premise environment that could automatically populate Excel with data and upload it automatically to SharePoint on a scheduled basis.  Something I will have to look into I suppose.

However, even if the auto-load with web services is possible you run into the next issue — default storage limits.  With each seat of Exchange 365 the user gets 25 GB (yes 25 GB — how cool is that!) of email storage, yet for each deployment of SharePoint 365 the organization gets 10 GB per deployment and 500 MB per user.  Isn’t there a disconnect here?  You get 50 times more storage space for email than you do for documents — it is almost as if Microsoft is saying that you should use Exchange as your document store.  With PowerPivot I regularly have workbooks that are 1 or 2 GB in size.  You can do the math on this one, but any organization serious about using PowerPivot in SharePoint 365 will most likely be paying extra very quickly.

Right now the answer from Microsoft is that you can use SharePoint 365 for your “traditional” SharePoint deployments and then do an on-premise deployment for those other components that are not supported.  What I was told (and still waiting confirmation so don’t use this as gospel) is that a user license for SharePoint 365 counts as a on-premise SharePoint CAL so you don’t have to pay twice (although you would still have to buy the SharePoint server license).  But I really can’t see most organizations splitting their deployments.  I think the most likely scenario is that they either keep it all on-premise or if they do go SharePoint 365 then they end up using some sort of other BI solution that is hosted in-house.  I could be wrong.  I guess only time will tell.

So begins my love/hate relationship with SharePoint 365.


6 Responses to “Office 365 and Business Intelligence”

  1. mto cleaning services…

    […]Office 365 and Business Intelligence « Alan Whitehouse's Ramblings[…]…

  2. Ron McVicar said

    Any updates on your review of Dynamics GP 10 and Performance Point?

  3. cleaning services phoenix said

    Today, I went to the beach front with my children.

    I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old
    daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear
    and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear.
    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!

  4. Gordon said

    Celebrities have shown throughout history that they can have unique tastes in wristwatches.

    There are some alternate venues through which 1 can also procure genuine watches such type of together with brand name
    pr luxury watches. Once you recognize simply what it’s you’re longing for in an exceedingly luxury watch,
    you’ll use our pointers for selecting your watch.

  5. Geraldo said

    Wow that was strange. I just wrote an incredibly long comment but after I clicked
    submit my comment didn’t appear. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again.
    Anyhow, just wanted to say wonderful blog!

  6. Tile grout

    Office 365 and Business Intelligence

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: